Voters at the Unity Town Meeting on Saturday will consider increasing trash bag sticker fees and tipping fees for dumpster use to help pay for an increase in the town’s trash collection contract with Sullivan’s Waste & Recycling.

The meeting is scheduled for 10 a.m. in the Unity Elementary School gymnasium, with elections to be held noon to 8 p.m. Friday at the Town Office.

In elections, incumbent Selectman Tony Avila is running unopposed for his seat for a three-year term. His is the only name on the ballot.

On Saturday, voters will consider a 58-article warrant that represents a municipal budget of $1.19 million, according to Town Clerk Kari Hunt.

The budget represents an increase of just under $60,000 from the $1.13 million budget voters approved in 2018, she said.

The proposed increase stems from the greater cost of trash removal and other, smaller increases in some items, according to Hunt, who also is administrative assistant to selectmen, the town treasurer, the tax collector and the registrar of voters. She noted the proposed $1.19 million budget is not just money to be raised in taxes, but also includes money that would be spent from the surplus account, excise taxes, tax increment financing funds and local road assistance program funds.

It is not known how much the current tax rate of $16.75 per $1,000 worth of property valuation would increase if all items on the warrant are approved, but the county budget increased by $17,000, according to Hunt. She noted the school budget also has not yet been decided.

The town contracts with Sullivan’s, of Troy, for curbside trash collection. Sullivan’s contract with the town increased by $30,000, according to Hunt. Previously, the contract was for $39,000.

“It’s been that way for years, and (Sullivan’s) came to selectmen and said there’s going to be an increase,” Hunt said. “Selectmen went to businesses and asked for quotes, and Sullivan came back and said they’re asking for $77,500.”

Currently, residents pay $1.25 per sticker for each bag of trash they leave at the curb. A bag must not exceed 30 gallons and it must not exceed 50 pounds, according to Hunt. When residents rent a dumpster from Sullivan’s, they pay a rental fee to the company and the town collects a $7.50 tipping fee for a 2-yard dumpster, or $3.75 per yard, she said.

Sullivan’s collects trash weekly, on Mondays in one area of town and on Fridays in another area.

Articles 32 and 33 of the warrant ask residents what sum they will vote to charge for trash stickers and dumpster tipping fees, respectively. The town would have to raise about $30,000 in taxes for sticker and dumpster fees, Hunt said.

“The articles were left open-ended so the townspeople can decide what price they want to (pay),” she said.

Trash is taken to the Crossroads landfill in Norridgewock. Residents also may take recycling materials to the Unity Area Regional Recycling Center.

In other matters Saturday, voters will consider approving a proposed balloon-release ordinance and a proposed false alarm ordinance.

The balloon ordinance would prohibit  the release of 10 or more balloons, inflated with a gas that is lighter than air, in a 24-hour period, with exceptions spelled out in the ordinance.

The false alarm ordinance is being considered as a way to reduce the number of false alarms and misuse of manpower and resources, as emergency vehicles and workers must respond to all alarms.

Voters Saturday also will consider spending $248,000 for summer roads, $212,000 for winter roads, $84,360 for the second road loan and $23,396 for the town’s share of the recycling center. Also requested are $78,046 for town officials’ salaries, $67,000 for administration, $73,161 for Fire Department maintenance and operations, $10,000 for the firetruck fund and $40,115 for the fire station loan payment.

 

Amy Calder — 861-9247

[email protected]

Twitter: @AmyCalder17


Comments are not available on this story.

filed under:

Augusta and Waterville news

Get news and events from your towns in your inbox every Friday.


  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.